Polygonatum spp.

Solomon’s Seal, a prized herb renowned for its efficacy in treating musculoskeletal injuries, holds a special place in my herbal clinic. Having cultivated it for years, I’ve not only ensured a reliable supply for my practice but also shared its rhizomes with fellow enthusiasts. Despite its prevalence in the wild in North America, sourcing this herb from reputable suppliers can be challenging due to limited commercial harvesting. However, its healing properties make it worth the effort.

Key Benefits:

  • Musculoskeletal Repair: Solomon’s Seal is exceptional in rebuilding damaged cartilage and connective tissue.
  • Joint Health: It promotes the production of synovial fluid, reducing the impact of grinding joints.
  • Ligament Tension: The herb restores proper tension to ligaments, whether they need to be loosened or toned/tightened.
  • Comprehensive Healing: Works well alone or in combination with herbs like mullein, bone set, gotu kola, etc., aiding recovery from various issues such as broken bones, ligament injuries, sprains, tendonitis, arthritis, and more.
  • Moistening and Soothing: It soothes and moistens the body’s tissues, mucous membranes, and respiratory tract, making it beneficial during menopause.
  • Flexibility for the Elderly: Promotes flexibility and ease of movement for older individuals by strengthening and lubricating muscles, bones, tendons, and ligaments.

Plant Profile:

  • Family: Asparagaceae | Asparagus was formerly in the Convallariacea Liliaceae |Lily family
  • Origins: Native to Asia, Europe, and North America
  • Visual Resemblance: The rhizomes resemble bones and vertebrae, with leaves wrapping around the stalk resembling tendons and ligaments.
  • Traditional Naming: Named “Solomon’s Seal” due to the sigil-like seals on the rhizomes, reminiscent of those used by magicians.

Traditional Uses:

  • Widespread Utility: Used across Asia, Europe, and North America as a sweet nutritive for tendons and joints.
  • Demulcent Properties: Acts as a demulcent, soothing irritation in mucosal areas, including the lungs, gastrointestinal tract, and female system.
  • Tonic Effects: Tonifies the sexual system, both male and female, and is considered a valuable trail food.

Chinese Herbalism:

  • Known as “yellow essence” in Chinese herbalism.
  • Classified as a sweet, neutral yin tonic, providing moistening, lubricating, and nourishing effects.
  • Modern research supports its use in various health conditions, including high blood pressure, liver protection, treatment of fatty liver, and regulation of blood sugar and blood fat levels.

Taste and Tissue State:

  • Taste: Sweet, slightly acrid, cool, and moist
  • Tissue State: Atrophy

Specific Indications:

  • Musculoskeletal: Stiff, tight, or loose tendons and ligaments.
  • Respiratory: Pulmonary issues and hemorrhages.
  • Cardiovascular: Heart relaxation, increasing space between beats.
  • Digestive: Intestinal upset, tension, and hemorrhoids.
  • Female: Menstrual flow, vaginal irritation, hormonal balance.
  • Male: Premature ejaculation.
  • External: Bruises, poison ivy.

Preparation and Dosage:

  • Rhizomes collected in the fall, dried for decoction, or extracted fresh in high-proof alcohol.
  • Dosage: External or internal use in small to large amounts.


  • Berries are considered toxic, and caution is advised.
  • Environmental challenges in some areas.

In summary, Solomon’s Seal, with its rich history and versatile applications, stands as a potent ally in promoting musculoskeletal health and overall well-being.

References: The Earthwise Herbal Matthew Wood pg. 274-278, Jim McDonald Herbcraft

The information provided is for educational purposes and is not intended to be a substitute for medical treatment. Consult your medical care provider before using herbal medicine, particularly if you have a known medical condition, are on any medication, and if you are pregnant or nursing.